Saturday, October 10, 2009

Was I just in the same room as Drew Barrymore and Regina Spektor?

I got up at 4:30 this morning which was pretty easy thanks to my jetlag, and got a cab to Rockefeller plaza. The queue for Saturday Night Live standby tickets was already substantial, but it was only a few hours until 7 am so I decided to hang around. I eventually got ticket number 65 for the dress rehearsal, I figured it was more likely I'd get into that - and that I'd still be awake at that time!

After that little adventure, I made the best of being up and uptown stupidly early and went up the Empire State building. The view was absolutely stunning. Looking at the financial district from up there was just unreal. All of New York is just living up to my expectations to an unexpected extent.
The rest of the day was taken up with an extensive bike tour of the best bits of Brooklyn. I took plenty of photos but saw way too much to even remember half of it. A certainly memorable part was cycling through the Hassidic Jewish quarter. It was both the sabbath and a special jewish holiday, and it was absolutely surreal to see street after street after street with the only people around dressed in identical, entirely anachronistic outfits.

After a slightly nervewracking ride back into Manhattan, I was totally wiped out. Got about 20 minutes rest back at the hotel and then made my way back to the NBC studios. I didn't have much hope to get in, really, but after about half an hour of nailbiting wait, I was literally the last person to be let in to the studio. My seat was a terrible one right at the back, but shortly before Reginas first song, one of the ushers came and moved me to fill a seat in the centre of the front row on the balcony, directly next to Bobby Moynihan parents. Her first song was "Eet", and she later returned (in a fantastic vintage polka dotted skirt suit) to play "the Calculation", as well. I was happy. H.A.P.P.Y.

I was all set to go and have a big Saturday night in New York City afterwards, but was just too exhausted - and every bar I saw that looked fun had queues and guestlists. I accidentally wandered through Times Square (which is bewildering at the best of times) and have now made it back to the hotel in time to watch the final version of the SNL show on the TV while drinking a beer. I have to say, this show is really not very good. I've been trying to get into it, and Seth Meyers of Weekend Update is great, but almost all of the sketches are just badly written, lame and unfunny.

After all the excitement of today, I still feel like I've failed for not having a big night out as well, but I'll just have to live with that. Bed now.

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